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trouble taking divots and stuff!

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So in my first rounds of the season I've noticed several ugly things. One being I'm not taking divots on my approach shots. I'll take relativley small ones on anything inside of 100 but other than that everything feels so thin. I feel as if I'm keep my head still and staying down but occasionaly I'll hit it thin. The obvious conclusion is that I'm striking the ball piss poor and its killing me out there. I'm sinking fast and my confidence is dwendling early on. I've set high expectations for myself this year and I'm aiming at consistantly being able to break 80. I've done it once and now I find myself back in the 90's early on. I've played a good 5 rounds now and have shot an 87 at best so far yet a friend of mine comes out his first round of the year and fires a 79. He's usually in the 70's but for a first round? Ahhhh why can't I be there yet? Haha. I guess I need drills and ideas for keying in on striking it well with the irons or your thoughts on everything I've said. I May need to come up with a practice regimine as I am very serious in improvement for this year and wilk have time everyday to put some work in.

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Here is a good drill you can do without the ball.  Find a grassy spot that you can take divots on without getting in trouble.  Mark a line on the ground that represents your ball position and practice your swing by intentionally taking divot.  You want your divot to be after the line.  Do this with a wedge and a longer iron like an 8 iron.

What you will find is were the low point of your swing is.  Your ball position should be set just behind where the divot consistently starts.  You will also notice that if you don't get your weight forward at impact, the divot will start further back.  You can really dial in proper weight forward, and forward shaft lean with this drill.  Bobby Clampett describes this drill in his book, The Impact Zone .  He actually recommends not even looking at the ball during a normal swing, but look to where the low point is going to be in front of the ball.

You will also get comfortable taking divots.  If you have been hitting off mats, this feeling can be odd because mats do a number on our wrists.  We subconsciously protect our wrists on mats and do subtle things like bending our arms up a bit to less the jarring impact.  This leads to bad form.  You want to take divots because this leads to better contact with irons.  If you have your divots in front of your ball, your distance control will really improve as well.  You will also be able to feel a well struck ball because the impact will feel more smooth because you hit ball before the ground.

Best of luck.


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